World War II was fought between the Axis Powers (Germany, Italy, Japan) and the Allied Powers (Britain, United States, Soviet Union, France). Most of the countries in the world were involved in some way. It was the deadliest war in all of human history with around 70 million people killed. When was it? World War II started in 1939 when Germany invaded Poland. Great Britain and France responded by declaring war on Germany. The war in Europe ended with Germany's surrender on May 7, 1945. The war in the Pacific ended when Japan surrendered on September 2, 1945. Where was it? World War II started in Europe, but spread throughout the world. Much of the fighting took place in Europe and in Southeast Asia (Pacific).
- World War II was a military conflict that lasted from 1939 to 1945 and involved nearly all the nations of the world.
- World War II was caused by the Treaty of Versailles and the German people’s resentment toward the League of Nations. The Treaty of Versailles was created in 1919 to ensure peace in Europe following World War I. The treaty said that land was to be taken away from Germany. It also stated that Germany would pay for damages caused by the war, and that Germany could only have a small army with no air force, submarines or tanks.
- Adolph Hitler was able to convince the German people to give him the power to improve conditions in Germany and restore the country’s strength and dignity. He vowed to tear up the Treaty of Versailles.
- Hitler began invading Austria and Czechoslovakia. He also built up the German army and their weapons. On September 1, 1939, Germany invaded Poland. When that happened, Britain and France declared war on Germany.
- Germany made treaties with Italy and Japan. The three became the Axis powers. Leaders of the Axis powers were Adolf Hitler, Emperor Hirohito and Benito Mussolini. The countries that made up the Allied powers included Russia, France, British Empire, Italy, United States, Romania, Serbia, Belgium, Greece, Portugal and Montenegro. Major Leaders of the Allies were Joseph Stalin, Franklin D. Roosevelt and Winston Churchill.
- The war covered territories in Europe, the Pacific, the Atlantic, South-East Asia, China, Middle East, the Mediterranean and Africa.
- On December 7, 1941, Japan bombed Pearl Harbor in the Hawaiian Island. The United States entered the war.
- The number of U.S. soldiers who served in World War II was 16,112,566, and the number wounded was 671,846. Over 100,000 Allied bomber crewmen were killed over Europe. Nearly 62 million people died during and leading up to the war.
- The Allies dropped 3.4 million tons of bombs, averaging of about 27,700 tons of bombs each month. On August 6, 1945, the United States dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima, Japan. A B29 super fortress bomber, called the ‘Enola Gay’ dropped the bomb. On August 9, 1945, another atomic bomb was dropped on Nagasaki, Japan. Over 225,000 people were killed or later died from radiation poisoning in both these attacks. These attacks virtually ended the waR with Japan.
- Adolf Hitler committed suicide on April 30, 1945. Germany surrendered on May 8, 1945. On August 14, 1945, Japan surrendered. World War II ended on August 15, 1945. The war not officially over until President Harry Truman issued a “proclamation of formal cessation of World War II hostilities”. This occurred on December 31, 1946
World War II
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About two million people joined the u.s army to fight for the u.s citizens.